It was a bit of a wake-up call. I almost became a statistic yesterday. See, my sister told me to put gas in the Neon if I was going to take it to work. Although I enjoy driving the Neon, I don't like getting (or paying) for gas, so I opted to take the mini-van instead. And it's a good thing I did.
As I was heading east down highway 22X in the left-hand lane, the driver of a semi with two trailers decided to change from his lane into mine. He signaled just long enough for me to realize I was in his blind spot and to hope that he shoulder checks. I sped up so that he would see me, but apparently he didn't bother to check anything before veering into my lane.
It was all too clear. To my left was the concrete divider, to my right (and coming closer) was the semi. I honked and slammed on the brakes, hoping to avoid being crushed between the two. The back half of the second trailer clipped and dragged along the passenger side of the van, completely obliterating the mirror.
Having made his successful lane change, the semi driver turned left at the next set of lights while I tried frantically to memorize the license plate number. Being in the left-hand lane at full 22X speed didn't allow for me to pull over, which is too bad, because I know there were other cars around who doubtlessly witnessed the incident. Although, even had I been able to pull over, I don't think the semi driver realized he had hit anything.
I continued driving until I got to work. From there I called home and the police and checked the damage. The paint just above the front right wheel is scraped off, and the hub cap is also scraped pretty badly. Had the semi pushed me a few more inches, doubtless I would have been sent careening head-on at highway speeds into the concrete divider - just ahead of the fast moving traffic behind me. Had something snagged on the wheel, I would have spun out and suffered much the same fate. We're talking a totaled vehicle and me airlifted to the hospital by STARS, best case scenario.
But all that's gone is some paint and the mirror. Thank God... I guess I'm not meant to die just yet. It could have gotten so ugly so easily. Imagine had I taken the little Neon....
I was pretty shaken up for the rest of the day, but all the police officers who talked to me were super nice (one was impressed by the bruise on my calf that I got from the uh... wild boar attack... or something). But now I have to make a few corrections to the report, so I'm hoping that doesn't interfere with their attempt to track down the semi driver.
If anyone observes a white semi with two red-trimmed trapezoidal trailers, see if you can read the company name on the truck and let me know...
“Few can foresee whither their road will lead them, till they come to its end.” J. R. R. Tolkien